GX | Pistilli Mutatio


Pistilli Mutatio


Project Data








Typeface & Graphic Design



Michael Leighton Beaman

Zaneta Hong



Catalyst Vol 04


Project Description

The Pistilli (Roman) Typeface first appeared in 1964, designed by american John Pistilli, head of lettering design at Sudler & Hennessy, Inc and his partner at Sudler & Hennessy Herb Lubalin. Stylistically, Pistilli Roman is a member of the Didone group of modern typefaces, which has origins with the french Didiot family dating back to the late 18th century. Aside from the formal qualities of Didot typefaces, Pistilli Roman exhibits a number of distinctive features including a modern stroke ratios and stresses, and transitional geometries. Pistilli Roman may be best identified by it’s “fancy” ambersand. (fig. 01)

fig. 01

Pistilli was designed as a phototype font, to be used on a typositor (a machine for hand-setting type). It has never been officially digitized, though similar fonts that approximate most of the typeface’s characteristics exist, most notably “Eloquent” 

Pisitilli Mutatio is a parameterized and rationalized variant of Pistilli Roman, created by translating specific and unique features into a set of algorithms that generate standardized, self-similar formal qualities, while adding a detached finial to each character, differentiating it from the original. The typeface was designed as a unicase script.

Integers 0-9 are used in the forthcoming book Catalyst vol 04 to create chapter introduction pages and to enumerate sections.